The Orvis Fly Fishing Report: Paul Procter reports on current fly fishing conditions in UK and abroad.

Updated: 27 April 2013
No. 37 Orvis Blog

Louis Noble on the Welsh Dee brings a good fish to hand using the ever popular Tenkara outfit.

Old becomes New:
The concept of fishing with only a rod and line (no reel) “Tenkara” style is nothing new as our forefathers developed this form of fly fishing centuries ago.  Back then they utilized lofty rods of some 14ft long that helped extend horse hair leaders and ultimately their artificial flies.  Recently popularized by the Japanese this elegant and lightweight method is currently sweeping our Globe.  Not surprising really as advantages lie in ultra delicate delivery and the ability to present a fly drag free at close to medium ranges on running water.  Manufactured by Tenkara USA, Orvis are offering a complete Tenkara outfit that provides the fishermen with everything he needs to practice this ancient art.  The outfit comprises of a Tenkara USA Iwana 12-foot telescopic rod that collapses to a mere 20" in length collapses to a mere 20" in length and weighs a mere 2.7 oz, a specifically designed furled line and line holder, all of which can be found here.
Our recently appointed Pro Guide Louis Noble specializes in Tenkara techniques who teaches the required skills to a high level.

Find Louis at:

Rutland Team Orvis member displays a stunning opening day rainbow of 8lb 2oz.

Mangrove tarpon like this will test your tackle to the limits.
Cuba 2013

To escape the clutches of winter, or more precisely, our Baltic spring weather, Orvis Pro Guide and top Spey Ghillie Jock Royan recently led a group of keen saltwater enthusiasts to the Jardines De La Reina lodge located in Cuba.  Aside from doing battle with exotic species, high on Jock’s agenda was to give the new Helios rods a proper going over and he didn’t have to wait long.  Granted, mangrove tarpon might not span the length of their migratory cousins, but they certainly pack a punch, especially when hooked in a tight spot.  There was also a rare opportunity to connect with Giant Trevally too and a chance that Jock didn’t squander, despite only having his bonefish outfit to hand.  After a searing run totaling 300 yards and some serious side strain, Jock landed a cracking specimen.  In fact, about the only species that didn’t play ball was the ever elusive Permit, which as given Jock an excuse for a return trip.  Anyone interested in joining Jock can contact him at:

Grafham Opening Day to remember:
Keen to blow away the cobwebs following a long winter indoors, Orvis Team Rutland headed to Grafham Water for opening day.  As ever, it’s always nice to get a few fish under your belt, especially when conditions conspire against you.  However, team member Dave Summers latched into something that bit more special.  Fishing a sinking line, several moments passed before the fish showed, but Dave knew instantly he was attached to a decent fish.  The usual nervousness followed before he finally slipped the net under a cracking, fin sharp, overwintered rainbow that dropped the scales to 8lb 2oz.  Of course, several other notable fish were boated in the session, but Dave’s capture went on to earn him the “New Lodge Trophy” for the Opening Day largest fish.

Jock Royan clutches the highly prized Giant Trevally, quite an achievement on a bonefish outfit.

Opening Day scenes of lying snow meant it was going to be a cold and challenging start to the New Season.

The river Wharfe under siege of snow. Scenes like were repeated throughout Yorkshire come the opening weeks.

Baltic start to the new Season in Cumbria:   
Just when spring should be encouraging more fly to hatch an Arctic blast put paid to any chance of dry fly sport during the opening weeks.  in fact, with lying snow water temperatures on my local river struggled to an icy 2.5oC and often the air hovered around freezing, not taking any wind chill factor into consider either.  Consequently, things got off to a rather ropey start when even into the first week of April, we’re yet to see a March Brown.  Fingers crossed, things will warm up over the coming month, hopefully kick starting the season proper.  

Just as bleak in Yorkshire:
Steve Rhodes our Pro Guide based in Yorkshire reports of grim conditions in Yorkshire too.  Their opening was plighted with heavy snow fal when blizzard like conditions kept olive hatches at bay.  Interestingly, Steve did find a couple of feeding trout though these were the exception rather than the rule.  Plenty of midges were present, sadly the Dale’s trout had little interest in them.  Steve’s guiding and teaching pretty much begins in earnest this month and those who are after a day will find him @

South fares better:
Our wise casting instructor Lee Watts based in South Wales reports their region fortunately avoided a dumping of snow, making Spring business as usual for them.  Blessed with decent hatches of Large Dark Olives they experienced dry fly fishing that was second to none whilst the rest of the country was under siege from snow and ice.  Better still, some of the larger trout were coaxed out to feed on prolific fly hatches.  Welsh International and upcoming ace Kieron Jenkins led the charge by winkling out some pretty impressive specimens.  As for the rest of us, well we’ve clearly got some catching up to do!

 2013 Schools and Courses:
Whether you’re a beginner out to learn the ropes or a more seasoned rod looking for advanced techniques, covering all aspects of fly fishing, Orvis have a full compliment of schools and courses scheduled for 2013.   Be it trout or salmon these include one day and residential courses from the Highlands of Scotland down to the Chalkstreams of Hampshire.  Here’s a few spring dates to kick off the season

For all Orvis schools and courses click here:
For further information and bookings please contact Judy Thornton:
Phone: 01264-349515

Paul Procter
Orvis UK
April 2013

Earlier Reports